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Host in cluster failed, and HA did not work

Hi Experts,

We recently had one of our hosts in our cluster fail, and effectively shut down. The VCenter server was located on this host and for some reason HA did not work and move the virtual machines to the other hosts, potential because it did not have the resources available at that time.

Thankfully it was a quick and easy fix on the host, and we managed to get it back up and running, but in the interim as the VM's were not migrated over to one of the other Hosts in the cluster it did cause a little disruption.


The question around the office, that I am asking today on here is:

If we were not able to recover the host and needed to get those machines up and running to minimize impact to the business, would we be able to some how get the other hosts to see and re-point to the VM files on the SAN? If so what would be the steps in order to achieve this?

Hopefully I have explained this well enough, but if there is anything you need clarification on in order to answer this, please don't hesitate to ask.

Kind Regards & Many Thanks in Advance.
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Flight5497
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Flight5497
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Yes, if you VMs are on the SAN, and all hosts have access to the VM datastores, it's easier than you think....

1. Select the datastore from the summary page on the ESXi Host.

(you may need to connect directly to the host using VMware vSphere Client if vCenter is unavailable). Try it and see!

2. Browse the datastore. see Step 2 in my EE Article

HOW TO: Clone or Copy a virtual machine in VMware vSphere Hypervisor ESX/ESXi 4.x or ESXi 5.0

3. Browse the Virtual Machine Folder -

4. Select, the VMX File, Right Click and select Add to Inventory.

5. The VM will appear in the inventory.

6. Right Click - Power On. If it asks a question on Moved or Copied, select MOVED! See article for why!

see my EE Article, Step by Step Tutorial Instructions with Screenshots

HOW TO: Select the right answer to "I Moved It" or "I Copied It" in VMware vSphere (ESXi)
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Flight5497Author Commented:
Thank you so much for this, this has been incredibly informative.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
no problems.
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